Texas A&M University-Kingsville

Emotional Intelligence Institute co-produced by Texas A&M-Kingsville named the best by state conference

KINGSVILLE - September 21, 2006

Contact: Jason Marton
jason.marton@tamuk.edu or 361-593-4143

The Emotional Intelligence Institute, “The Key to College Success and Beyond,” co-produced by Texas A&M University-Kingsville, was recently named Best Institute from the 2005 College Academic Support Programs (CASP) state conference in College Station.

The honor was posted this month in the fall 2006 CASP biannual newsletter.

As Best Institute, it has been asked back for this year’s CASP state conference in Austin Oct. 18-21, jointly sponsored by The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, the Texas College Reading and Learning Association, the Texas Association of Developmental Education and the national organization College Reading and Learning Association.

The winning institute explored how the development of emotional intelligence skills can impact college student success. The presenters demonstrated that emotional intelligence may be the most important factor influencing students' achievement, career success, leadership, and satisfaction in community colleges and universities. Dr. Gary Low, professor for educational leadership and counseling at A&M-Kingsville, was a presenter, along with Dr. Santos Martinez and Rito Silva of Coastal Bend College, and Dr. Robert Vela Jr. of San Jacinto College-North.

There were seven institutes represented at the 2005 conference. Program chairs determined Best Institute through criteria that included attendance numbers and evaluations handed in by conference attendees.

“The CASP award is especially meaningful because the presenter team included a team of outstanding educators,” said Low. “They all are significantly involved in EI research and programs using emotional intelligence to improve student success and institutional effectiveness.”

Texas A&M-Kingsville is home to the Emotional Intelligence Research Initiative (EIRI), dedicated to the research, study and development of person-centered assessment and education intervention models for high achievement and personal well being of students and educators.  Based in the College of Education, the EIRI conducts and supports collaborative research with individuals, schools, community colleges, universities and organizations to assess and document the role and impact of emotional intelligence skills and competencies to achievement, performance, life effectiveness and health.

Since 1980, more than 40 doctoral level studies have been completed using EI assessments created, developed and researched by Low and Dr. Darwin Nelson, professor of educational leadership & counseling at A&M-Kingsville’s College of Education. Research abstracts are maintained by EIRI and summarized for professionals and students.

“I t is exciting to see the growing recognition and impact that our positive educational model of emotional intelligence is having on college students and academic programs in Texas, nationally and internationally,” said Low. “The need for curricula that address emotional intelligence, individual character, and leadership is becoming more widely acknowledged in private and public sectors. Texas A&M University-Kingsville is being cited more and more as a ‘best practices’ university for its research and classes featuring emotional intelligence.”

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